Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Ethics Schmethics

Some people are complaining that the newest AIDS prevention plan by the WHO breaches ethical codes on consent.

The plan involves testing everybody for HIV every year in hard-hit areas like sub-Saharan Africa and immediately putting those who are positive on Aids drugs. It could slash dramatically the number of new infections, because Aids drugs lower the levels of virus in the body, making HIV transmission through unprotected sex much less likely. But the strategy, expounded in a paper published online today by the Lancet medical journal, raises major issues both over implementation and over ethics. Currently people who are HIV positive are not put on treatment until they need it, because of the toxicity and side-effects of antiretroviral drugs. It raises the prospect of subjecting people to potential medical harm for the public good, rather than their individual benefit.

I know I know...Nuremberg code...medical experimentation without consent...blah blah blah...

But they're just brown people, for heaven sake!


Dad29 said...

But they're just brown people

Were you deliberately alluding to the Congressional testimony of those who proposed banning DDT?

Anonymous said...

Couldn't/shouldn't HIV positive people just not have sex?

Oh, wait, there was this new ad on the subway today:

Not thinking correctly again. Sorry.

Unknown said...

Couldn't/shouldn't HIV positive people just not have sex?

Certainly, if they know they have HIV.

But to find that out, they would have to be tested.